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  1. Know-How as Competence. A Rylean Responsibilist Account.David Löwenstein - 2017 - Frankfurt am Main: Vittorio Klostermann.
    What does it mean to know how to do something? This book develops a comprehensive account of know-how, a crucial epistemic goal for all who care about getting things right, not only with respect to the facts, but also with respect to practice. It proposes a novel interpretation of the seminal work of Gilbert Ryle, according to which know-how is a competence, a complex ability to do well in an activity in virtue of guidance by an understanding of what it (...)
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  • The End‐Relational Theory of ‘Ought’ and the Weight of Reasons.Daan Evers - 2010 - Dialectica 64 (3):405-417.
    Stephen Finlay analyses ‘ought’ in terms of probability. According to him, normative ‘ought's are statements about the likelihood that an act will realize some (contextually supplied) end. I raise a problem for this theory. It concerns the relation between ‘ought’ and the balance of reasons. ‘A ought to Φ’ seems to entail that the balance of reasons favours that A Φ-es, and vice versa. Given Finlay's semantics for ‘ought’, it also makes sense to think of reasons and their weight in (...)
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  • Securing the Empirical Value of Measurement Results.Kent W. Staley - forthcoming - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science.
    Reports of quantitative experimental results often distinguish between the statistical uncertainty and the systematic uncertainty that characterize measurement outcomes. This paper discusses the practice of estimating systematic uncertainty in high-energy physics. The estimation of systematic uncertainty in HEP should be understood as a minimal form of quantitative robustness analysis. The secure evidence framework is used to explain the epistemic significance of robustness analysis. However, the empirical value of a measurement result depends crucially not only on the resulting systematic uncertainty estimate, (...)
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  • How to Be an Ethical Expressivist.Alex Silk - 2015 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 91 (1):47-81.
    Expressivism promises an illuminating account of the nature of normative judgment. But worries about the details of expressivist semantics have led many to doubt whether expressivism's putative advantages can be secured. Drawing on insights from linguistic semantics and decision theory, I develop a novel framework for implementing an expressivist semantics that I call ordering expressivism. I argue that by systematically interpreting the orderings that figure in analyses of normative terms in terms of the basic practical attitude of conditional weak preference, (...)
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  • Making Sense of the Libertarian’s Semantic Claim About Agential Phenomenology.Andrew Sims - 2018 - Philosophical Explorations 22 (1):16-32.
    Libertarians about free will sometimes argue for their position on the grounds that our phenomenology of action is such that determinism would need to be false for it to be veridical. Many, however, have thought that it would be impossible for us to have an experience that is in contradiction with determinism, since this would require us to have perceptual experience of metaphysical facts. In this paper I show how the libertarian claim is possible. In particular, if experience depicts the (...)
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  • A New Puzzle About Belief and Credence.Andrew Moon - 2019 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 49 (2):272-291.
  • Fatalism and the Logic of Unconditionals.Justin Bledin - forthcoming - Noûs.
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  • A Higher Order Extensional Framework for the Progressive.K. Varasdi - 2010 - Journal of Semantics 27 (2):177-206.
    This paper proposes an extensional event-based framework for the progressive aspect. The proposal differs from that of Parsons (1990) in that it does not have incomplete events in its base ontology but constructs ‘proxies’ for such events through certain sets of properties of complete events.
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  • Free Choice, Modals, and Imperatives.Maria Aloni - 2007 - Natural Language Semantics 15 (1):65-94.
    The article proposes an analysis of imperatives and possibility and necessity statements that (i) explains their differences with respect to the licensing of free choice any and (ii) accounts for the related phenomena of free choice disjunction in imperatives, permissions, and statements. Any and or are analyzed as operators introducing sets of alternative propositions. Free choice licensing operators are treated as quantifiers over these sets. In this way their interpretation can be sensitive to the alternatives any and or introduce in (...)
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  • Dividing Things Up: The Semantics of or and the Modal/or Interaction. [REVIEW]Mandy Simons - 2005 - Natural Language Semantics 13 (3):271-316.
    In this paper, the meanings of sentences containing the word or and a modal verb are used to arrive at a novel account of the meaning of or coordinations. It is proposed that or coordinations denote sets whose members are the denotations of the disjuncts; and that the truth conditions of sentences containing or coordinations require the existence of some set made available by the semantic environment which can be ‘divided up’ in accordance with the disjuncts. The relevant notion of (...)
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  • Counterfactual Scorekeeping.Anthony S. Gillies - 2007 - Linguistics and Philosophy 30 (3):329 - 360.
    Counterfactuals are typically thought--given the force of Sobel sequences--to be variably strict conditionals. I go the other way. Sobel sequences and (what I call) Hegel sequences push us to a strict conditional analysis of counterfactuals: counterfactuals amount to some necessity modal scoped over a plain material conditional, just which modal being a function of context. To make this worth saying I need to say just how counterfactuals and context interact. No easy feat, but I have something to say on the (...)
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  • Decisions, Dynamics and the Japanese Particle Yo.C. Davis - 2009 - Journal of Semantics 26 (4):329-366.
    I provide an account of the Japanese sentence-final particle yo within a dynamic semantics framework. I argue that yo is used with one of two intonational morphemes, corresponding to sentence-final rising or falling tunes. These intonational morphemes modify a sentence's illocutionary force head, adding an addressee-directed update semantics to the utterance. The different intonational contours specify whether this update is monotonic or non-monotonic. The use of yo is then argued to contribute a pragmatic presupposition to the utterance saying that the (...)
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  • Conditional Questions.J. Isaacs & K. Rawlins - 2008 - Journal of Semantics 25 (3):269-319.
    This paper provides an analysis of conditional questions (CQs) that combines a dynamic semantics for conditionals with a partition semantics for questions. We propose that CQs are interpreted in two steps. First, a temporary context is created in which the propositional content of the antecedent is obtained. Second, the question in the consequent is asked relative to this temporary context. Subsequent answers are then asserted relative to the temporary context. Our analysis also has a pragmatic component. Previous analyses have augmented (...)
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  • Wird Schon Stimmen! A Degree Operator Analysis of Schon.Malte Zimmermann - forthcoming - Journal of Semantics.
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  • Deontic Modality. [REVIEW]Jussi Suikkanen - 2018 - Analysis 78 (2):354-363.
    This is a critical notice of Nate Charlow and Matthew Chrisman's (eds.) edited collection of articles entitled Deontic Modality. It begins from a brief overview of Angelika Kratzer's standard ordering semantic model for understanding deontic modals such as 'ought', 'must', and 'may' and some of the problems of this model. The focus is then on how many of the articles of this collection reach to these problems by either developing the standard model further or by formulating alternatives to it. This (...)
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  • Modality, Weights and Inconsistent Premise Sets.Alex Silk - 2017 - Journal of Semantics 34 (4):683-707.
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  • Weight for Stephen Finlay.Daan Evers - 2013 - Philosophical Studies 163 (3):737-749.
    According to Stephen Finlay, ‘A ought to X’ means that X-ing is more conducive to contextually salient ends than relevant alternatives. This in turn is analysed in terms of probability. I show why this theory of ‘ought’ is hard to square with a theory of a reason’s weight which could explain why ‘A ought to X’ logically entails that the balance of reasons favours that A X-es. I develop two theories of weight to illustrate my point. I first look at (...)
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  • What Does ‘Legal Obligation’ Mean?Daniel Wodak - forthcoming - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly.
    What do normative terms like “obligation” mean in legal contexts? On one view, which H.L.A. Hart may have endorsed, “obligation” is ambiguous in moral and legal contexts. On another, which is dominant in jurisprudence, “obligation” has a distinctively moralized meaning in legal contexts. On a third view, which is often endorsed in philosophy of language, “obligation” has a generic meaning in moral and legal con- texts. After making the nature of and disagreements between these views precise, I show how linguistic (...)
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  • 'Ought' and Resolution Semantics.Fabrizio Cariani - 2013 - Noûs 47 (3):534-558.
    I motivate and characterize an intensional semantics for ‘ought’ on which it does not behave as a universal quantifier over possibilities. My motivational argument centers on taking at face value some standard challenges to the quantificational semantics, especially to the idea that ‘ought’-sentences satisfy the principle of Inheritance. I argue that standard pragmatic approaches to these puzzles are either not sufficiently detailed or unconvincing.
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  • Whither Anankastics?Billy Dunaway & Alex Silk - 2014 - Philosophical Perspectives 28 (1):75-94.
  • One Ought Too Many.Stephen Finlay & Justin Snedegar - 2014 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 89 (1):102-124.
    Some philosophers hold that „ought‟ is ambiguous between a sense expressing a propositional operator and a sense expressing a relation between an agent and an action. We defend the opposing view that „ought‟ always expresses a propositional operator against Mark Schroeder‟s recent objections that it cannot adequately accommodate an ambiguity in „ought‟ sentences between evaluative and deliberative readings, predicting readings of sentences that are not actually available. We show how adopting an independently well-motivated contrastivist semantics for „ought‟, according to which (...)
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  • Safety and the True–True Problem.Jon Cogburn & Jeffrey W. Roland - 2013 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 94 (2):246-267.
    Standard accounts of semantics for counterfactuals confront the true–true problem: when the antecedent and consequent of a counterfactual are both actually true, the counterfactual is automatically true. This problem presents a challenge to safety-based accounts of knowledge. In this paper, drawing on work by Angelika Kratzer, Alan Penczek, and Duncan Pritchard, we propose a revised understanding of semantics for counterfactuals utilizing machinery from generalized quantifier theory which enables safety theorists to meet the challenge of the true–true problem.
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  • Epistemic Modals and Credal Disagreement.Torfinn Thomesen Huvenes - 2015 - Philosophical Studies 172 (4):987-1011.
    Considerations involving disagreement, as well as related considerations involving correction and retraction, have played an important role in recent debates about epistemic modals. For instance, it has been argued that contextualist views about epistemic modals have problems when it comes to explaining cases of disagreement. In response to these challenges, I explore the idea that the relevant cases of disagreement may involve credal disagreement. In a case of credal disagreement, the parties have different degrees of belief or credences. There does (...)
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  • Innocent Exclusion in an Alternative Semantics.Luis Alonso-Ovalle - 2008 - Natural Language Semantics 16 (2):115-128.
    The exclusive component of unembedded disjunctions is standardly derived as a conversational implicature by assuming that or forms a lexical scale with and. It is well known, however, that this assumption does not suffice to determine the required scalar competitors of disjunctions with more than two atomic disjuncts (McCawley, Everything that linguists have always wanted to know about logic* (But were ashamed to ask). Chicago University Press, Chicago, 1993, p. 324; Simons, “Or”: Issues in the semantics and pragmatics of disjunction. (...)
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  • Logic and Semantics for Imperatives.Nate Charlow - 2014 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 43 (4):617-664.
    In this paper I will develop a view about the semantics of imperatives, which I term Modal Noncognitivism, on which imperatives might be said to have truth conditions (dispositionally, anyway), but on which it does not make sense to see them as expressing propositions (hence does not make sense to ascribe to them truth or falsity). This view stands against “Cognitivist” accounts of the semantics of imperatives, on which imperatives are claimed to express propositions, which are then enlisted in explanations (...)
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  • Against Fallibilism.Dylan Dodd - 2011 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 89 (4):665 - 685.
    In this paper I argue for a doctrine I call ?infallibilism?, which I stipulate to mean that If S knows that p, then the epistemic probability of p for S is 1. Some fallibilists will claim that this doctrine should be rejected because it leads to scepticism. Though it's not obvious that infallibilism does lead to scepticism, I argue that we should be willing to accept it even if it does. Infallibilism should be preferred because it has greater explanatory power (...)
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  • Punishing the Awkward, the Stupid, the Weak, and the Selfish: The Culpability of Negligence.Michael Moore & Heidi Hurd - 2011 - Criminal Law and Philosophy 5 (2):147-198.
    Negligence is a problematic basis for being morally blamed and punished for having caused some harm, because in such cases there is no choice to cause or allow—or risk causing or allowing—such harm to occur. The standard theories as to why inadvertent risk creation can be blameworthy despite the lack of culpable choice are that in such cases there is blame for: (1) an unexercised capacity to have adverted to the risk; (2) a defect in character explaining why one did (...)
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  • On Unidirectionality in Precisification.Peter Klecha - 2018 - Linguistics and Philosophy 41 (1):87-124.
    This paper provides a formal pragmatic analysis of precision which accounts for its essential properties, but also for Lewis’s :339–359, 1979) observation of asymmetry in how standards of precision may shift due to normal discourse moves: Only up, not down. I propose that shifts of the kind observed and discussed by Lewis are in fact cases of underlying disagreement about the standard of precision, which is only revealed when one interlocutor uses an expression which signals their adherence to a higher (...)
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  • The Nature of Doubt and a New Puzzle About Belief, Doubt, and Confidence.Andrew Moon - 2018 - Synthese 195 (4):1827-1848.
    In this paper, I present and defend a novel account of doubt. In Part 1, I make some preliminary observations about the nature of doubt. In Part 2, I introduce a new puzzle about the relationship between three psychological states: doubt, belief, and confidence. I present this puzzle because my account of doubt emerges as a possible solution to it. Lastly, in Part 3, I elaborate on and defend my account of doubt. Roughly, one has doubt if and only if (...)
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  • Necessitarian Propositions.Jonathan Schaffer - 2012 - Synthese 189 (1):119-162.
    Kaplan (drawing on Montague and Prior, inter alia) made explicit the idea of world and time neutral propositions, which bear truth values only relative to world and time parameters. There was then a debate over the role of time. Temporalists sided with Kaplan in maintaining time neutral propositions with time relative truth values, while eternalists claimed that all propositions specify the needed time information and so bear the same truth value at all times. But there never was much of a (...)
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  • Modality and its Conversational Backgrounds in the Reconstruction of Argumentation.Andrea Rocci - 2008 - Argumentation 22 (2):165-189.
    The paper considers the role of modality in the rational reconstruction of standpoints and arguments. The paper examines in what conditions modal markers can act as argumentative indicators and what kind of cues they provide for the reconstruction of argument. The paper critically re-examines Toulmin’s hypothesis that the meaning of the modals can be analyzed in terms of a field-invariant argumentative force and field-dependent criteria in the light of the Theory of Relative Modality developed within linguistic semantics, showing how this (...)
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  • On Necessity and Comparison.Aynat Rubinstein - 2014 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 95 (4):512-554.
    The ability to compare possibilities and designate some as ‘better’ than others is a fundamental aspect of our use of modals and propositional attitude verbs. This article aims to support a proposal by Sloman that certain modal expressions, in particular, ought, in fact have a more pronounced comparative backbone than others . The connection between ‘ought’ and ‘better’ is supported by linguistic data and a proposal is advanced for modeling ideals in a way that makes room for non-comparative, strong, priority-type (...)
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  • Can I Kill My Younger Self? Time Travel and the Retrosuicide Paradox.Peter B. M. Vranas - 2009 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 90 (4):520-534.
    If time travel is possible, presumably so is my shooting my younger self ; then apparently I can kill him – I can commit retrosuicide. But if I were to kill him I would not exist to shoot him, so how can I kill him? The standard solution to this paradox understands ability as compossibility with the relevant facts and points to an equivocation about which facts are relevant: my killing YS is compossible with his proximity but not with his (...)
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  • Is Knowledge Normative?Mark Schroeder - 2015 - Philosophical Issues 25 (1):379-395.
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  • Knowledge and the Permissibility of Action.N. Ángel Pinillos - forthcoming - Synthese:1-23.
    I argue in favor of a certain connection between knowledge and the permissibility of action. On this approach, we do not think of the relation between those notions as reflecting a universal epistemic principle. Instead, we think of it as something resembling a platitude from folk psychology. With the help of some elementary tools from the logic of normativity and counterfactuals, I attempt to establish the connection by deriving it from more elementary principles. The new formulation involves a ceteris paribus (...)
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  • The Agentive Modalities.John Maier - 2013 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 87 (3):113-134.
    A number of philosophical projects require a proper understanding of the modal aspects of agency, or of what I call ‘the agentive modalities.’ I propose a general account of the agentive modalities, one which takes as its primitive the decision-theoretic notion of an option. I relate this account to the standard semantics for ‘can’ and to the viability of some positions in the free will debates.
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  • Causal Premise Semantics.Stefan Kaufmann - 2013 - Cognitive Science 37 (6):1136-1170.
    The rise of causality and the attendant graph-theoretic modeling tools in the study of counterfactual reasoning has had resounding effects in many areas of cognitive science, but it has thus far not permeated the mainstream in linguistic theory to a comparable degree. In this study I show that a version of the predominant framework for the formal semantic analysis of conditionals, Kratzer-style premise semantics, allows for a straightforward implementation of the crucial ideas and insights of Pearl-style causal networks. I spell (...)
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  • On the Treatment of Incomparability in Ordering Semantics and Premise Semantics.Eric Swanson - 2011 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 40 (6):693-713.
    In his original semantics for counterfactuals, David Lewis presupposed that the ordering of worlds relevant to the evaluation of a counterfactual admitted no incomparability between worlds. He later came to abandon this assumption. But the approach to incomparability he endorsed makes counterintuitive predictions about a class of examples circumscribed in this paper. The same underlying problem is present in the theories of modals and conditionals developed by Bas van Fraassen, Frank Veltman, and Angelika Kratzer. I show how to reformulate all (...)
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  • Rational 'Ought' Implies 'Can'.Ralph Wedgwood - 2013 - Philosophical Issues 23 (1):70-92.
    Every kind of ‘ought’ implies some kind of ‘can’ – but there are many kinds of ‘ought’ and even more kinds of ‘can’. In this essay, I shall focus on a particular kind of ‘ought’ – specifically, on what I shall call the “rational ‘ought’”. On every occasion of use, this kind of ‘ought’ is focused on the situation of a particular agent at a particular time; but this kind of ‘ought’ is concerned, not with how that agent acts at (...)
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  • Ghosts, Murderers, and the Semantics of Descriptions.Anders Johan Schoubye - 2013 - Noûs 47 (3):496-533.
    It is widely agreed that sentences containing a non-denoting description embedded in the scope of a propositional attitude verb have true de dicto interpretations, and Russell's (1905) analysis of definite descriptions is often praised for its simple analysis of such cases, cf. e.g. Neale (1990). However, several people, incl. Elbourne (2005, 2009), Heim (1991), and Kripke (2005), have contested this by arguing that Russell's analysis yields incorrect predictions in non-doxastic attitude contexts. Heim and Elbourne have subsequently argued that once certain (...)
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  • Deliberative Modality Under Epistemic Uncertainty.Fabrizio Cariani, Magdalena Kaufmann & Stefan Kaufmann - 2013 - Linguistics and Philosophy 36 (3):225-259.
    We discuss the semantic significance of a puzzle concerning ‘ought’ and conditionals recently discussed by Kolodny and MacFarlane. We argue that the puzzle is problematic for the standard Kratzer-style analysis of modality. In Kratzer’s semantics, modals are evaluated relative to a pair of conversational backgrounds. We show that there is no sensible way of assigning values to these conversational backgrounds so as to derive all of the intuitions in Kolodny and MacFarlane’s case. We show that the appropriate verdicts can be (...)
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  • An Investigation of the Lumps of Thought.Angelika Kratzer - 1989 - Linguistics and Philosophy 12 (5):607 - 653.
  • The Application of Constraint Semantics to the Language of Subjective Uncertainty.Eric Swanson - 2016 - Journal of Philosophical Logic 45 (2):121-146.
    This paper develops a compositional, type-driven constraint semantic theory for a fragment of the language of subjective uncertainty. In the particular application explored here, the interpretation function of constraint semantics yields not propositions but constraints on credal states as the semantic values of declarative sentences. Constraints are richer than propositions in that constraints can straightforwardly represent assessments of the probability that the world is one way rather than another. The richness of constraints helps us model communicative acts in essentially the (...)
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  • Worlds, Events, and Inertia.Károly Varasdi - 2017 - Journal of Logic, Language and Information 26 (3):303-332.
    The semantics of progressive sentences presents a challenge to linguists and philosophers alike. According to a widely accepted view, the truth-conditions of progressive sentences rely essentially on a notion of inertia. Dowty suggested inertia worlds to implement this “inertia idea” in a formal semantic theory of the progressive. The main thesis of the paper is that the notion of inertia went through a subtle, but crucial change when worlds were replaced by events in Landman and Portner :760–787, 1998), and that (...)
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  • Imperatives and Modals.Paul Portner - 2007 - Natural Language Semantics 15 (4):351-383.
    Imperatives may be interpreted with many subvarieties of directive force, for example as orders, invitations, or pieces of advice. I argue that the range of meanings that imperatives can convey should be identified with the variety of interpretations that are possible for non-dynamic root modals (what I call ‘priority modals’), including deontic, bouletic, and teleological readings. This paper presents an analysis of the relationship between imperatives and priority modals in discourse which asserts that, just as declaratives contribute to the Common (...)
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  • Unable to Do the Impossible.Anthony Nguyen - 2018 - Mind 1.
    Jack Spencer has recently argued for the striking thesis that, possibly, an agent is able to do the impossible—that is, perform an action that is metaphysically impossible for that person to perform. Spencer bases his argument on (Simple G), a case in which it is impossible for an agent G to perform some action but, according to Spencer, G is still intuitively able to perform that action. I reply that we would have to give up at least four action-theoretical principles (...)
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  • Epistemic Conditionals and Conditional Epistemics.Anthony S. Gillies - 2004 - Noûs 38 (4):585–616.
  • The Varieties of Modality.Jessica Leech - 2016 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 97 (2):n/a-n/a.
    In ‘The Varieties of Necessity’ Fine presents purported counterexamples to the view that a proposition is a naturally necessary truth if and only if it is logically necessary relative to or conditional upon the basic truths about the status and distribution of natural kinds, properties and relations. The aim of this article is to defend the view that natural necessity is relative necessity, and the general idea that we can define other kinds of necessity as relative, against Fine's criticisms.
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  • Probabilities of Conditionals in Context.Justin Khoo - 2016 - Linguistics and Philosophy 39 (1):1-43.
    The Ramseyan thesis that the probability of an indicative conditional is equal to the corresponding conditional probability of its consequent given its antecedent is both widely confirmed and subject to attested counterexamples (e.g., McGee 2000, Kaufmann 2004). This raises several puzzling questions. For instance, why are there interpretations of conditionals that violate this Ramseyan thesis in certain contexts, and why are they otherwise very rare? In this paper, I raise some challenges to Stefan Kaufmann's account of why the Ramseyan thesis (...)
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  • Spaces of Possibility.Timothy Williamson - 2018 - Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement 82:189-204.
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